Watershed Implementation Plan Update - September 2017

Hello Cypress Creek Friends and Neighbors! 

We hope everyone weathered the recent storms and that you are safe and dry. There’s been a lot happening and we have many updates to share with you. We are still adding content and data to the website, so if there’s something you’d like to see please let us know. We’d also love for you to share anything you think would be valuable to include in our newsletter or news blasts. 

In the past few months, we’ve hosted several workshops and meetings, including a riparian management training and a well owner’s workshop. Huge thanks to Texas A&M for coming to visit us twice! We participated in the Blanco River Onion Creek Water Forum where we shared information and ways to collaborate with our neighbors on water issues. We hosted two open houses and we are still sorting through all the wonderful feedback we received. We will include that information in our brief news update next month and on our website. We are also planning to reconvene the Watershed Stakeholder Committee for a reunion and working meeting. 

Texas Stream Team hosted water quality monitoring trainings. Congrats to all our new Wimberley Valley Citizen Scientists! The work you do is so valuable and we are grateful for your commitment to Cypress Creek and the Blanco River. Scroll down for additional Stream Team trainings and feel free to contact Stream Team with questions or to schedule additional trainings – joinstreamteam.org. 

Furthermore, we began our efforts to learn more about the sources of bacteria in the downtown reach of Cypress Creek and have sent our first samples to the lab at Texas A&M for DNA analysis. We are still a few weeks out from having our first set of results and we will be collecting more samples. Moreover, we presented to City Council about the bacterial source tracking and the importance of quality assured data. Now, more than ever, it is important to make decisions based on available data and scientific expertise. Read more below and visit our website for updates. 

In the coming months, we will be hosting several more meetings, trainings and workshops, as well as getting started with installation of rain water harvesting systems, rain gardens and other best management practices to prevent and mitigate pollution. We’re excited to be working with King Feed and Ace Hardware to share more information about rainwater harvesting. Huge thanks to two wonderful local businesses. Texas A&M will be joining us again to teach us more about rainwater harvesting and smart landscaping and we are planning a fall rain water harvesting construction demonstration at the lovely Patsy Glenn Refuge. We’ll keep you posted. 

The team is still working on several technical reports, reviewing water quality trends, and wrapping up our “book” and educational hand out series. Please let us know if you would like to contribute photos, original artwork or personal stories about the creek for use in the book and handouts. We’d love to have them. 

Keep reading to learn more about water quality, what some of our partners are up to, conservation tips, and more. If you are not on the mailing list, please let us know! There are many opportunities to get involved in protecting your watershed. Contact us for more information at cypresscreek@txstate.edu. 

In closing, so many of our neighbors to the south of us were terribly impacted by Hurricane Harvey. Please visit the following sites for information on how you can help – Meadowswater.org and https://www.texastribune.org/2017/08/28/hurricane-harvey-relief-efforts-how-help/. There are also many local residents and businesses supporting evacuees. The Lodge at Woodcreek is housing several affected by the flooding and is accepting donations, including gift cards. Cash donations are also being accepted at The Thrift Store and many other businesses. Thanks to Ace Hardware, Wimberley Valley Watershed Association (WVWA) and the many, many other wonderful Wimberley folks who are so generous. Please let us know if you come across other ways to provide support locally, we would be happy to share the information. 

The Cypress Creek Project Team